L’humanité responsable de ses propres malheurs

Longue entrevue avec Yuval Noah Harari

In Kyiv, Harari gave several interviews to local journalists, and sometimes mentioned a man who had been on our flight from Israel to Ukraine. After the plane left the gate, there was a long delay, and the man stormed to the front, demanding to be let off. There are times, Harari told one reporter, when the thing “most responsible for your suffering is your own mind.” The subject of human suffering—even extreme suffering—doesn’t seem to agitate Harari in quite the way that industrial agriculture does. Indeed, Harari has taken up positions against what he calls humanism, by which he means “the worship of humanity,” and which he discovers in, among other places, the foundations of Nazism and Stalinism. (This characterization has upset humanists.) Some of this may be tactical—Harari is foregrounding a contested animal-rights position—but it also reflects an aspect of his Vipassana-directed thinking. Human suffering occurs; the issue is how to respond to it. Harari’s suggestion that the airline passenger, in becoming livid about the delay, had largely made his own misery was probably right; but to turn the man into a case study seemed to breeze past all of the suffering that involves more than a transit inconvenience.

Yuval Noah Harari’s History of Everyone, Ever – His blockbuster “Sapiens” predicted the possible end of humankind. Now what?

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